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Could Boeing Move 737 Production? (AW&ST)  
User currently offlineAircellist From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1709 posts, RR: 8
Posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 5763 times:

Key sentence: sented second-quarter earnings that saw a 6% growth in revenues and 17% in earnings from operations.>

From the article, it seems the present and planned flnal assembly line could theoretically reach about 63 airplanes per month...


http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/gener...or%20737%20Production&channel=comm

So... Renton? Wichita? Charleston?... China??? Brazil??? South Korea???

Ironic, when A.Net is buzzing with thoughts of Airbus setting a production line for the NEO somewhere in the USA...

26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAircellist From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1709 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 5701 times:

Fligthblogger also chimes in:

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/fl...ntil-re-engine-plans-are-firm.html

with interesting excerpts of the conference at AA order...

edit: and of yesterday's press conference as well (read too fast)...

[Edited 2011-07-28 06:09:04]

User currently offlinemdword1959 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 5664 times:

Dominic Gates does a good job of outling the "pro-Renton" argument in the Seattle Times:

Quote:
...Renton is by far Boeing's most efficient assembly plant, currently rolling out more than 31 jets a month. The company plans plans to raise that to 42 per month by the first half of 2014.

A finely-tuned 737 supply chain converges on Renton, including the delivery of entire fuselages by rail from Wichita.

That's why it came as a shock to hear McNerney raise the possibility that the upgraded plane might be assembled elsewhere, a shift that would likely be expensive...

...Boeing is contemplating raising 737 production rates as high as 60 airplanes a month in the latter part of this decade. Two assembly lines there can already go to the 42 per month rate.

A third line is currently used only to assemble the P-8 miltary version of the 737, built as an anti-submarine plane for the Navy.

The rate on the P-8 assembly line is set to be no more than a couple of military jets per month. The most obvious and probably the cheapest way to get to a total rate of 60 jets per month would be to upgrade that production line to accommodate both the commercial and military versions of the jets, and to have it pump out planes at a rate about equal to the other two lines....
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...ogy/2015742924_boeingrenton28.html


User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4116 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 5661 times:

It would be interesting to see if the need for a whole new plant is needed for the new 737 product. I also found a comment that they are not pursuing a completely new single aisle aircraft at this time. I'm thinking that DL may be making noise about a new order and Boeing is trying to show that they have the capacity to produce the number of aircraft needed to meet the needs of the airlines.


Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently offlineAircellist From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1709 posts, RR: 8
Reply 4, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 5629 times:

Another dart in the union's heart, I guess...

User currently offlinemdword1959 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 5561 times:

BTW, the 737 assembly/outfitting/painting/testing/delivery process currently takes place at both RNT and BFI:

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=926984

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=1020375

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=1015972


User currently offlinepacksonflight From Iceland, joined Jan 2010, 379 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 5543 times:

I guess they are just shopping around for some state aid to help finance the program. Probably they are a bit cash strapped at the moment.

User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3383 posts, RR: 26
Reply 7, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5409 times:
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Quoting packsonflight (Reply 6):
I guess they are just shopping around for some state aid to help finance the program.


there's no State monies to be had and there would be a great pushback if they tried for tax subsidies.

basically this is all about posturing before the next contract negotiation...


User currently offlinebrilondon From Canada, joined Aug 2005, 4116 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5310 times:

Quoting packsonflight (Reply 6):
I guess they are just shopping around for some state aid to help finance the program. Probably they are a bit cash strapped at the moment.



The government is not going to cough any funding at the moment, nor should they. There seems to be a slight short fall of funds in the government wallets at the present time and funding of a private enterprise is not something that should be contemplated until the money is available.



Rush for ever; Yankees all the way!!
User currently offlineWarpSpeed From United States of America, joined Feb 2010, 580 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5289 times:

This is risky business for a program that was deemed more conservative than the NSA. With sooo much currently on their plate in the 787-8, 747-8 (EIS, Production ramp-up) and with needing to get the 787-9, -10, and 777 refresh up and running, Boeing Sr. Mgt has chosen to expose the company to even greater uncertainty.

NcNearney has warned about "mission creep" with the 737RE - that is, trying to do much more than is necessary to accomplish the original goal. I'd argue building the 737 of any type in another location (other than possibly the Puget Sound area) is a form of mission creep. It adds unneeded complexity into a cash cow program and places the 737RE's timely EIS into doubt. This is especially true for a company that has shown it has a lot of difficulty managing the complexity of a new production system/supply chain.

The mission should be to get the 737RE out the door and onto the operators flight-line as soon as possible; not getting the best state-aid package or sticking it to the unions.



DaHjaj jaj QaQ Daghajjaj !!!!
User currently offline2175301 From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1034 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5266 times:

It is likely that the existing two lines can probably get to 50 planes per month; and a 3rd line will likely be needed to get above that.

I see two possible strategies for the third line.

1) Move the military production elsewhere. There are reasons to have a separate line for the P-8 and it could be moved without relly affecting overall production schedules (although there would probably be a several to 6 month window with no deliveries). Also, sending a few sets of parts elsewhere per month would not be that difficult.

2) Build a 3rd 737 assembly line elsewhere (likely next to the 2nd 787 line).

The first option is up front cheapest. The 2nd option may be long term cheapest even with the cost of building a new line elsewhere.

I agree that this is being put out there to gain Union "understandings" of the options for the next round of negotiations (long term no-strike clause is likely the biggest thing Boeing is looking for). I also believe that the Union will actually control which option will be executed by how they react.


User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 5187 times:

Quoting brilondon (Reply 8):
The government is not going to cough any funding at the moment, nor should they. There seems to be a slight short fall of funds in the government wallets at the present time and funding of a private enterprise is not something that should be contemplated until the money is available.


This would be a state [not the federal] government and they would not be putting any money.

Tax breaks are used by the states to lure businesses so they choose their state over another.

Things like no corporate tax, no property tax, no inventory tax, etc, not actual cash.


User currently offlinemhkansan From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 669 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 5155 times:

Wichita has a bunch of very experienced avaition workers out of a job and many of them are ex-Boeing or Spirit employees. If they opened up a line here it would really improve the industry's image and presence and I'm sure that the state of Kansas could get a very competitive benefits package to land a line in Wichita.

User currently offlineikramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21472 posts, RR: 60
Reply 13, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 5104 times:

Might they move the military assembly to Wichita and free up the third line for more commercial jets?


Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30548 posts, RR: 84
Reply 14, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 5005 times:
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It is my understanding that the P-8 line at Renton can already produce commercial 737s in addition to the P-8, so Boeing should have the production capacity in place to go to produce 60 units per month at Renton already.

The NSA/797 will likely be built outside of Renton / outside of Washington because Boeing have stated they want the suppliers to be in the same geographic area and neither Renton nor Everett have the available space to support a new final assembly complex.

So I could see Boeing wanting to put a third 737 line into another state that can handle both commercial and P-8 deliveries with the intention the NSA/797 assembly facility would be there, as well. This would give Boeing the ability to draw down Renton as production shifts from the 737 to the 797 and then they could close Renton, leaving the other 737 plant to finish out the commercial deliveries and then continue with the P-8.

How much space is there at Wichita? I have to believe Spirit has the inside track as the NSA/797 fuselage supplier since they currently build the 737's and they're the only 787 sub who is having no issues building CFRP barrels, so whether Boeing goes Al or CFRP, Spirit will be the safest bet to build those fuselages.


User currently offlinemdword1959 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4955 times:

Quoting Stitch (Reply 14):
neither Renton nor Everett have the available space to support a new final assembly complex.

There is quite a bit of undeveloped land at PAE on the west side of the property to the south of the Kilo North Ramp.

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=1005781

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=1008476


User currently offlinemhkansan From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 669 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 4822 times:

I'm thinking the NSA final assembly line will take up a lot more space then they can scrounge up at PAE.

Wichita has a lot of airfield space the city would probably offer them cheap for a final assy. plant. However, I doubt we'll see Boeing itself back in Wichita. Probably just an expanded Spirit presence.


User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30548 posts, RR: 84
Reply 17, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4793 times:
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Quoting mdword1959 (Reply 15):
There is quite a bit of undeveloped land at PAE on the west side of the property to the south of the Kilo North Ramp.

Assuming Boeing is serious about having the fuselage and wing fabricators in the same complex as the final assembly building, I don't see there being enough room in the area.

I used to work the Snohomish County Public Utility District Operations Base across the street from PAE and I don't really think they have the area for another major complex unless they took over SNOPUD's facility. To the north of PAE is a watershed, so I don't think they'd be allowed to expand in there and if they were, the environmental mitigation would be very expensive.


User currently offlineSwallow From Uganda, joined Jul 2007, 554 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4788 times:

JM is probably blustering ahead of contract talks next year. Moving the 737 line at this point in time does not make sense given all that the 787 and 748 programs have gone through Why rock the boat on 737RE, the golden goose of the company?

One can argue that Leahy made Boeing punt on the NSA. And by 'forcing' big B to offer the 737RE, he may have returned the punt for touchdown given the wild sales success that airframe has enjoyed



The grass is greener where you water it
User currently offlinemdword1959 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4750 times:

Quoting mhkansan (Reply 16):
I'm thinking the NSA final assembly line will take up a lot more space then they can scrounge up at PAE.

In the past there's been talk of building a new narrowbody Final Assembly Building on part of the current ramp area on the east side of the airfield, and building new ramp areas on the west side of the airport to replace the facilities in question.

http://planepictures.net/netshow.php?id=1027726

[Edited 2011-07-28 12:49:21]

User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3383 posts, RR: 26
Reply 20, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4612 times:
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Quoting 2175301 (Reply 10):
It is likely that the existing two lines can probably get to 50 planes per month; and a 3rd line will likely be needed to get above that.

the current 4-81 and 4-82 buildings are designed for 4 lines (2 per)... the 4-20 complex has room for more wing tooling..

people seem to forget the 757 had two FAL lines running in one building while the 737 had 2 in the other.

The 4-20 complex has room where te 757 wing line was for expansion without impacting the P-8 line...

with no additional facilities required. any new facility will cost millions to erect and outfit.. this is all about next years contract talks... nothing more. boeing just extended the airport lease for 20 years and built a new composite assembly building.. why would they move. the real estate isn't worth the costs of a new site and complex


User currently offlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12333 posts, RR: 25
Reply 21, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 4493 times:

Quoting Aircellist (Thread starter):
Renton? Wichita? Charleston?... China??? Brazil??? South Korea???

Mexico? It's a NAFTA state... Just sayin'....

Quoting mdword1959 (Reply 5):
BTW, the 737 assembly/outfitting/painting/testing/delivery process currently takes place at both RNT and BFI:

Assembly at BFI? Are you sure about that?

Quoting Stitch (Reply 14):
I have to believe Spirit has the inside track as the NSA/797 fuselage supplier since they currently build the 737's and they're the only 787 sub who is having no issues building CFRP barrels, so whether Boeing goes Al or CFRP, Spirit will be the safest bet to build those fuselages.

I'm pretty sure Boeing will not build NSA in a union factory, so Spirit may win parts of the deal but I doubt Boeing would plop down a non-union FAL next to the union Spirit factories.

Quoting Stitch (Reply 17):
SNOPUD

Oh, my!

Quoting kanban (Reply 20):
this is all about next years contract talks... nothing more.

  

But it's still interesting to read the CEO say how they still don't know how much they'll be modifying the 737.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinemdword1959 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4365 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 21):
Assembly at BFI? Are you sure about that?

No assembly at BFI since the first 200 or so 737s off the line in the sixties - sorry for any confusion.


User currently offlineFlaps From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 1258 posts, RR: 4
Reply 23, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4226 times:

How much room is available in SC where the new 787 line is? SC has a lot going for it in addition to the labor environment. While I personally think Wichita would be the best choice SC would likely be just as good overall if there is room.

User currently offlineMoltenRock From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (2 years 12 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3490 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 21):
I'm pretty sure Boeing will not build NSA in a union factory, so Spirit may win parts of the deal but I doubt Boeing would plop down a non-union FAL next to the union Spirit factories.

Seeing Boeing's last foray into keeping as much work as possible out of the hands of Boeing union represented employees went so splendidly with the 787 program, I would hazard a guess that if they repeat this mistake they'll be out of business. Maybe Boeing management should just focus on building planes together as a team instead of trying to save $1 or $2 an hour by sourcing pieces / parts from non-union shops 1/2 a world away. Additionally, why Boeing feels the need to antagonize their employees by not committing to Renton regarding a non-existent plane is laughable. Way to go guys! What did that accomplish, other than pissing off your employees?

http://www.flightglobal.com/articles...ils-to-commit-to-renton-plant.html


25 Post contains links N126DL : There's plenty of room. Check Google Maps: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Charle...&sspn=58.72842,135.263672&t=h&z=15 This image is a bit
26 Post contains images AirbusA370 : They could build them in Europe. Airbus will open a NEO line in Alabama, so I think that's only fair
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